New Historicism and Race and Ethnic Studies. “New” vs. “Old” Historicism. “Old” Historicism History provides the background and context for a story. History is stable and objective. Literature reflects or presents history. “New” vs. “Old” Historicism. “Old” Historicism
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New Historicism and Race and Ethnic Studies
“So if you really want to hurt me, talk badly about my language. Ethnic identity is twin skin to linguistic identity−I am my language. Until I can take pride in my language, I cannot take pride in myself. Until I can accept as legitimate Chicano Texas Spanish, Tex-Mex, and all of the other languages that I speak, I cannot accept the legitimacy of myself. Until I am free to write bilingually and to switch codes without always having to translate, while I still have to speak English or Spanish when I would rather speak Spanglish, as as long as I have to accommodate English speakers rather than having them accommodate me, my tongue will be illegitimate.
I will no longer be made to be ashamed of existing. I will have my voice: Indian, Spanish, white. I will have my serpent’s tongue−my woman’s voice, my sexual voice, my poet’s voice. I will overcome the tradition of silence” (81).
Anzaldúa, Gloria Evangelina. Borderlands/La Frontera. 2nd Ed. San Francisco: Aunt Lute Books, 1999.